Homeowner Articles 5+ Home Efficiency Hacks to Save on Summer Utility Bills

Get your home summer ready and rack up the savings

Spring is officially here in the Upstate, and that means a few things: warmer temperatures, plenty of pleasant days, and — let’s be real — tons of pollen.

But the arrival of spring means that South Carolina’s blistering summer is just around the corner — and so are those expensive utility bills from running your air conditioner hard all summer long.

Now is the time to be a proactive homeowner: with a few smart adjustments this spring, you’ll get your home into shape for summer and keep those utility bills in check.

So get ready for a high-efficiency summer with lower energy bills using these 5 home efficiency hacks — and keep reading to the end to see 3 more bonus mini-hacks!

1. Check Your Insulation

We typically think of insulation as a winter project, but it actually plays a role in improving your home’s comfort level and efficiency all year round.

In the winter, the insulation in your attic serves as a barrier, keeping the warm indoor air in and the chilly winter air out.

But have you ever popped up into your attic during the heat of summer? It’s downright sweltering up there!

During the summer, your home’s insulation is doing the same thing, in reverse: it’s working as a barrier, keeping more cold air inside and preventing that stunningly hot attic air from creeping into your home.

There are several types of insulation available, and many homeowners are familiar with the classic rolls of pink stuff. A far better approach is blown in insulation: with our state-of-the-art equipment, we can blow a thick layer of insulation throughout your attic and potentially even down into your walls.

Blown-in insulation is also fireproof and has sound-resistant properties. Some varieties can even repel pests!

2. Schedule an AC Tune-Up

Now is the perfect time to schedule an AC tune-up: it’s still relatively comfortable outside, which means if it turns out something needs to be fixed on your AC, you can get the job taken care of before the hot summer temps make your home uncomfortable or even uninhabitable.

Many Upstate homeowners have a heat pump system that runs practically year-round. This kind of wear and tear can lead to the wrong kind of surprises when the weather shifts hard from cold to moderate to hot. Now is the right time to make sure yours is still running efficiently.

If you heat your home with a furnace, our advice is still the same: your AC has been dormant for several months now, so you want to make sure it’s running in tip-top shape before you’re relying on it for months on end.

Proactive maintenance allows us to find and fix small issues before they turn into big, expensive problems.

Ready to get proactive? Schedule your AC tune-up today!

3. Seal Your Attic and/or Crawlspace

One thing we notice from time to time when adding blown-in insulation to a customer’s home is a gap (or multiple gaps) between the attic and the living space. This is especially common in older homes in our area.

If you can see visible gaps or if a home services contractor finds them when inspecting your home, you might want to consider asking your contractor about sealing the attic. Doing so can eliminate drafts, which otherwise push back against the work your HVAC system is doing to cool or heat your home, depending on the season.

Many homes in Upstate South Carolina are built on top of a crawlspace. While there are good reasons to use this kind of construction, crawlspaces can lead to all sorts of problems over time. They can get wet and lead to mold and mildew problems. They’re the perfect location for all sorts of pests to nest. And, just like attics, crawlspaces can develop gaps that allow drafts into your living space.

Sealing your crawl space may be an option, or there may be other ways to address these gaps.

Whatever your crawl space needs are, from moisture barriers to waterproofing and sealing, our team is happy to help.

4. Invest in Duct Cleaning

Your home’s HVAC system relies on a network of ducts running through your attic, crawlspace, and/or walls. You don’t see the ducts themselves and usually can’t access very much of the system, which leads to some pretty serious cases of “out of sight, out of mind.”

Unfortunately, neglected ducts can lead to big problems: as dust and debris builds up in your ducts, your HVAC has to work much harder to produce the same results. It has to push harder to pump the same amount of air through the system.

Not only that, but some of the stuff that builds up in your ducts is pretty nasty. We’re talking pet dander, mold, bacteria, and a host of other stuff that most people don’t exactly enjoy breathing.

Duct cleaning is relatively inexpensive and it’s highly effective: with one easy treatment, we can remove around 99% of the junk that’s accumulated in your ducts. Not only will this help you save money on your utility bills this summer, but it will also help you breathe easier thanks to cleaner conditioned air throughout your home.

5. Upgrade to a Smart Thermostat

Do you stay in your home 24/7?

If not, why are you paying to cool it as if you did?

For most of us there are some big chunks of the day where no one’s home except maybe the dog. And while you don’t want your home to be a sauna when you get home, there’s really no reason to keep it a crisp 70 degrees (or whatever your temperature of choice may be) when no one’s home.

In the old days, budget-conscious homeowners might tick the thermostat up a few degrees before leaving for the day. But then the house is uncomfortably warm for the first hour or so after you get home.

Enter the smart home thermostat.

A smart thermostat can automatically adjust the temperature in your home to match your usage patterns. Some of them can even learn your routine and refine their schedules based on your activity. It’s a great way to save money on your utility bills with barely a second thought: once your smart thermostat is set up, it’ll automatically ease up at night and when the home is empty. The result? Constant comfort and lower utility bills.

Upstate Home Maintenance Services Is Your Home Efficiency Partner

Maximizing your home efficiency this spring is the best way to improve your home’s efficiency and lower those utility bills, and the Upstate Home Maintenance Services team is ready to partner with you to get it done.

Our technicians are standing by ready to help you with any of the smart home upgrades described above, plus additional efficiency-boosting services:

Don’t wait until the sweltering summer to improve your home’s summer efficiency: make the proactive choice to start saving on your utility bills right away.

Ready to discuss the best efficiency improvements for your home? Reach out to our team now!